Herbert Hoover to Woodrow Wilson




Hoover-Wilson Correspondence, Hoover Institution, Hoover Institution Archives, Stanford, California


Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library & Museum




Dear Mr. President

At a recent informal meeting in New York, of Members of the principal relief organisations, called to discuss a better consolidation and furthering of relief efforts abroad, it was considered that it would be very desirable, as a matter of preparedness, to take early steps for the formation of a great national relief fund, to meet the present crisis at home, this fund to be raised primarily for the American Red Cross and secondarily for other relief measures at home and abroad.

Those present Wwere Mr. Elliott Wadsworth of the American Red Cross, Mr. John R. Mott of the YMCA, Mr. Herbert Hoover and Mr. WL Honnold of the Belgian Relief Commission, Mr. Federick Walcott of the Rofkefeller Foundation, Mr. Cleveland H. Dodge of the Armenian Relief Commission, and Mr. CA Coffin of the American Relief Clearing House.

It appeared to us that in the period of emotion which must ensue if war is declared, thousands of disconnected and unorganized efforts wouill arise, much waste of money and efflort will ensue, and the country would not as a whole give such a response as could be summoned by better organized effort.

This group therefore authorized us to lay before you the desirability of at once assembling a small committee comprising men representing the larger efforts throughout the country, which should act as preliminary committee for the organization of a large National Committee embracing every element of American life, which should take in hand, under the official authority of yourself, the collection and administration of a consolidated National Relief Fund.

We realise full well the burden and anxiety resting upon your shoulders, and it is the desire of all of these gentlemen to lighten it in any way and to place their services at your disposal forif you should wish them tlo act as above, and they would of course be glad to embrace any gentlemen in such a preliminary Committee whose names might suggest themselves to your wisdom. Before any general committee were launched we should desire to submit the personnel for your approval and revision, and to have your authority for them to act. 

Yours faithfully,
(Signed) Elliott Wadsworth
[Handwritten text:](Chairman Central Committee Amer. Red Cross)
(Signed) H. C. Hoover

To the President of the United States.

Original Format





Hoover, Herbert, 1874-1964, “Herbert Hoover to Woodrow Wilson,” 1917 February 5, WWP19053, Hoover Institute at Stanford University Collection, Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library & Museum, Staunton, Virginia.

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